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IN- Coach found dead hours before assistant's arrest

9-2-2008 Indiana:

PETERSBURG, Ind. - Pike Central High School's football coach was found dead in his home Tuesday, hours before a former assistant in his program turned himself in to state police in an investigation over text messages sent to a 17-year-old student.

Marty Deputy, head football coach and teacher at Pike Central High School, was found dead about 6:40 a.m. EDT at his home in southern Indiana's Gibson County, said Chief Deputy Coroner David Knowles. He said the death had been ruled a suicide, but declined to discuss the manner in which Deputy died.

Knowles said a note was left, but he declined to discuss its content.

Tuesday afternoon, Luke Musselwhite, 26, a former assistant football coach at the school, surrendered at the Pike County Jail in Petersburg and was arrested on charges of disseminating harmful material to a minor and contributing to the delinquency of a minor, state police said. The Jasper man was released on $2,500 cash bond.

Musselwhite could not be reached for comment Tuesday night. A man who answered the phone at the number listed for the only Musselwhite in Jasper said he did not know how to contact him.

Musselwhite resigned from his teaching position shortly before the start of the school year, state police said.

State police said Musselwhite was accused of sending more than 200 text messages, including several that were sexual in nature, to a 17-year-old female Pike Central student during October and November.

State police spokesman Sgt. Todd Ringle said Tuesday night that two teachers had been under investigation, but he could not identify the second one.

It was not clear how long Musselwhite had been Deputy's assistant.

Deputy, 31, was in his fourth season as head football coach at 650-student Pike Central in Petersburg and had compiled a record of 3-29, including a current streak of 17 straight losses. He previously was an assistant coach for one year at Jasper High School and one year at Pike Central. He also taught English and Bible literature at Pike Central.

Students at the high school and middle school were dismissed early after administrators learned of Deputy's death, and the school's football game Friday against Heritage Hills was canceled.

School was scheduled to reopen Wednesday. Grief counselors were expected to be available. ..News Source.. by Chicago Tribune

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